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Robina Institute of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice;
Alaska has had statutory sentencing guidelines in place since 1980, which have since been supplemented by appellate court decisions. Alaska briefly created a sentencing commission in 1990; it produced a final report in 1992 before its legislative mandate expired in 1993. Alaska felony defendants are sentenced to definite terms of imprisonment.Alaska's Constitution provides for a parole board; the statute that the current Board operates under was originallyenacted in 1985. Alaska law provides both discretionary parole for some inmates and mandatory parole for mostinmates serving a sentence of more than two years.
Carsey School of Public Policy at The University of New Hampshire;
The north and south polar regions have been rapidly changing, affecting global weather and sea levels and sparking international concern about shipping and resources. While these global impacts occur, physical changes such as warming and less ice directly affect ecosystems and people living in polar regions. President Obama, visiting the northern Alaska town of Kotzebue in summer 2015, noted the impact of climate change on the American Arctic, where several towns may be abandoned due to rising flood risks in the next few decades, if not sooner.
Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP);
A new report commissioned by Rasmuson Foundation as part of its Plan4Alaska campaign finds that while strategies currently proposed to close Alaska's $4 billion budget gap would significantly improve the state's fiscal standing, a diversified revenue strategy is needed this year to close the gap and equitably distribute financial impact. Rasmuson Foundation commissioned the report in response to comments from lawmakers about the dearth of economic data available to gauge the impact of various revenue scenarios. "Distributional Analyses of Revenue Options for Alaska" was produced by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), a nonprofit, non-partisan research organization with a mission to ensure that elected officials, the media, and the general public have access to accurate, timely, and straightforward information that allows them to understand the effects of current and proposed tax policies. ITEP used Gov. Bill Walker's Sustainable Alaska Plan in its analysis, and evaluated its proposed reductions to the Permanent Fund dividend, and income, alcohol, tobacco, and motor fuel tax increases to determine effects on Alaskans at different income levels. ITEP found that a fiscal plan that relied heavily on Permanent Fund earnings without income tax and other forms of taxation would disproportionately impact middle-income working families and low-income Alaskans. The report also examines a variety of options to derive more revenue from the income tax and less from reductions to the dividend. Among the alternative income tax structures examined are a doubling of the governor's proposed tax, the implementation of a more progressive income tax proposed by Rep. Paul Seaton in 2015, and the enactment of a 6.4 percent flat tax on incomes over $100,000 (or over $200,000 for married couples).
Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED);
The Assets & Opportunity Scorecard is a comprehensive look at Americans' financial security today and their opportunities to create a more prosperous future. It assesses the 50 states and the District of Columbia on 130 outcome and policy measures, which describe how well residents are faring and what states are doing to help them build and protect assets. The Scorecard enables states to benchmark their outcomes and policies against other states in five issue areas: Financial Assets & Income, Businesses & Jobs, Housing & Homeownership, Health Care, and Education.
University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute;
Why is there so much difference in the health of residents in one county compared to other counties in the same state? In this report, the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps program explores how wide gaps are throughout Alaska and what is driving those differences. This information can help Alaska state leaders as they identify ways for everyone to have a fair chance to lead the healthiest life possible. Specifically, this document can help state leaders understand: 1. What health gaps are and why they matter 2. The size and nature of the health gaps among boroughs/census areas within Alaska 3. What factors are influencing the health of residents, and 4. What state and local communities can do to address health gaps.
Two years ago, we explored philanthropy's response to the worst economic crisis in our country since the Great Depression. We reported that contributions from foundations and corporations declined over 23% from 2008 to 2010 because of the recession's impact on foundation assets and uncertainty about the future. In this report, we analyzed 23,783 grants to Northwest organizations from 245 funders in 20121, totaling $958,347,806. This represents a 4% decline in giving over 2010. We were not surprised by this finding. The Foundation Center predicted that national giving by foundations and corporations would remain flat in 2012 given the volatile economic recovery, while over 77% of Philanthropy Northwest members that responded to our annual survey expected their giving to remain flat or decrease.
Other key findings from this edition of Trends in Northwest Giving include:
Dramatic state-by-state variation in grantmaking trends.Corporate giving is up sharply, but not all states are seeing the benefits. Education receives the largest share of grant dollars, a total of $239 million, or 25% of regional grantmaking. Health funding grew more than any other category, but is still far below national levels.
American Mental Health Counselors Association;
This comprehensive study shows that 6.7 million uninsured people with a mental illness are currently eligible for coverage under the Medicaid Expansion that went into effect on Jan. 1, 2014. But the majority of these individuals with mental health conditions will be left out in the coverage cold due to their state's antagonism toward the Medicaid Expansion health insurance initiative.
Third Way, The;
How easy is it to buy a firearm from a complete stranger without a background check? In an analysis of internet gun sales in 10 states from a single website during the months of June and July, Third Way found more than 15,000 guns -- onethirdof which were semi-automatics -- available for sale without background checks at any given moment. In 2,000 web ads in these states, buyers were intentionally seeking private sellers where background checks are specifically exempt from federal law.
This report focuses on online sales in the 10 states where Senators were initially targeted but failed to support bipartisan legislation to close this virtual loophole.
Environmental Defense Fund;
The Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) Crab Rationalization Program (the Rationalization Program) was designed to improve resource conservation, operating efficiency and fishermen's safety while maintaining participation by remote communities. A number of important features account for the diverse natures of stakeholders and the fishery's historical importance to many communities. These include: a unique three-pie approach that defines and assigns different types of privileges to vessel owners, crew and processors; an industry-funded, government-operated loan program to assist new entrants and crew; and voluntary Cooperatives that assist in program administration and fishing coordination.
Environmental Defense Fund;
The Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands (BSAI) Non-Pollock (Amendment 80) Cooperative Program was one of the first catch share programs designed and implemented to manage fishing interactions with a non-target species. The goals of the program were largely focused on reducing bycatch to enable the fleet to achieve higher retention of groundfish resources. In this program, participants were incentivized to form Cooperatives to receive exclusive access privileges. Key design elements for this program include eligibility requirements, government-approved Cooperative formation, concentration caps, trading restrictions and sideboards, which are catch limits that restrict the transfer of excess fishing capacity to other fisheries not managed under catch shares.
Environmental Defense Fund;
The United States Central Gulf of Alaska Rockfish Cooperative Program was implemented to address economic instability in Kodiak, Alaska, caused by an intense race to fish, fleet overcapitalization, shrinking seasons and timing conflicts with other fisheries. The program is designed to protect historical fishing communities and jobs by extending secure fishing privileges to eligible Cooperatives in tandem with associated delivery restrictions to processors. Key design elements for this program include shareholder eligibility requirements, Cooperative formation, concentration caps, delivery restrictions, prohibition of discards, and sideboard limits, which are catch limits that keep rockfish participants from exceeding their historical levels of participation in other fisheries during the month of July.
Environmental Defense Fund;
The Alaska Halibut and Sablefish Fixed Gear Individual Fishing Quota Program (IFQ Program) was one of the first to include a variety of design elements to meet key social goals while also contributing to decreasing overcapitalization and increasing the value of the fishery. Some of the key design elements include low concentration limits, restrictions on trading, strict shareholder eligibility requirements and more. The program also allocates a percentage of the shares to the Community Development Quota (CDQ) program, which includes 65 eligible communities organized into six groups and was designed to ensure fishing access, support economic development, alleviate poverty, and provide economic and social benefits to residents of western Alaska communities (North Pacific Fishery Management Council, n.d, A).